Illinoisans deserve clean government and audits they can trust, and that’s why a group of 21 lawmakers said it is demanding the state’s top watchdog take an unpaid leave of absence.
Illinois Auditor General Frank Mautino is being investigated by the Illinois State Board of Elections and the U.S. attorney’s office. Questions surround Mautino’s campaign expenses from when he was a high-ranking Democrat in the Illinois House of Representatives. State Rep. Ron Sandack, R- Downers Grove, said it’s time for Mautino to step aside.
“Who’s auditing the auditor? Well, it appears the federal government is now, and that’s not what we need,” Sandack said.
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State Sen. Laura Murphy, D-DesPlaines, asked Mautino to take a leave of absence. Murphy said that would be in the best interest of Illinois and state taxpayers.
Sandack said the entire situation shakes the foundation of the auditor general position itself. “It’s a job that’s composed of the highest trust and confidence and fiduciary responsibility.”
The Illinois Constitution states the General Assembly can vote to remove the auditor general for cause with a three-fifths vote of the members in each chamber. Sandack said that conversation could be happening soon.
“The processes occurring with the board of elections, and more troubling with the federal investigation, probably amounts to cause for many members of the Legislature,” Sandack said.
Murphy said more information is needed. “I think you have to wait until their reports are concluded.”
Mautino confirmed in May the federal investigation but denied further comment, saying it would be inappropriate.
Mautino has until July 1 to amend campaign expense reports for the state elections board.